Horizon Europe extends call deadlines after Hamas attack rocks Israeli science

18 Oct 2023 | News

Israeli researchers, some still under rocket fire, have said it was impossible to meet application cut-off points during a state of war. Now the ERC and EIC are pushing back four deadlines for all applicants

The European Research Council (ERC) and European Innovation Council (EIC) have pushed back four call application deadlines after warnings from Israeli applicants that they need more time, given the impact of Hamas’s attack on the country.

Earlier this week, Israeli researchers told Science|Business how the massacres of 7 October had left them shaken, and denuded labs of researchers, as Israelis were called up to the military and foreign researchers and students flew home.

Several said they were still sheltering at home due to rocket fire, and called on the ERC to extend its upcoming deadlines.

This morning (October 18) the European Commission confirmed that it would shift back four deadlines to give them more time. The extension doesn’t just apply to Israelis, but to all applicants, regardless of country.

“We acknowledge that these circumstances make it difficult to timely complete and submit proposals to some Horizon Europe calls with deadlines in the coming days and weeks,” the statement said.

“With this extension, we offer our support to those affected by the recent hostilities,” said research commissioner Iliana Ivanova in the statement. “Our research community believes in inclusivity, resilience, and collaboration, and we are devoted to ensuring that each organisation has equal chances. Our thoughts are with you, and we wish you safety and peace, above all.”

The details of the extensions are as follows:

  • The ERC Starting Grant Call will be extended from 24 October to 7 November;
  • The ERC Synergy Call will be extended from 8 November to 15 November;
  • The EIC Accelerator will be extended from 19 October to 8 November;
  • The EIC Pathfinder will be extended from 18 October to 25 October.

Israel is one of the most successful applicants to ERC schemes. For this year’s advanced grants, for example, it was the fourth most successful country, ahead of Spain and Italy. The country has won more than €500 million from Horizon Europe to date.

This story has been updated to include extensions from the European Innovation Council

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